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The 9 biggest moments from the fifth Democratic debate in Atlanta

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  • On November 20, ten presidential candidates gathered in Atlanta, Georgia, for the fifth Democratic primary debate co-hosted by MSNBC and The Washington Post.
  • With less than three months out before the first primary contests take place in Iowa and New Hampshire, the race is quickly heating up.
  • But after two marathon days of explosive impeachment hearings, Wednesday’s debate was relatively subdued, with Democrats mostly focusing on the issues and refraining from attacking each other directly.
  • Here are the nine biggest moments from the debate.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories. 

On November 20, ten presidential candidates gathered in Atlanta, Georgia, for the fifth Democratic primary debate co-hosted by MSNBC and The Washington Post.

In order to qualify for the November debate, candidates needed both 165,000 individual donors and to earn either 3% in four DNC-approved national polls or 5% in two approved early-state polls from Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, or Nevada. 

In all, ten candidates made the stage, down from 12 who participated in the October debate. The November debate was moderated by veteran NBC correspondent and host Andrea Mitchell, MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow, NBC News White House correspondent Kristen Welker, and Washington Post White House reporter Ashley Parker.

With less than three months out before the first primary contests take place in Iowa and New Hampshire, the race is quickly heating up.

While former Vice President Joe Biden leads most national polls and has a massive lead among both African-American and Latino voters, he’s facing fierce competition in Iowa and New Hampshire from Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, and especially from Mayor Pete Buttigieg in the moderate lane. 

But after two marathon days of explosive impeachment hearings, Wednesday’s debate was relatively subdued, with Democrats mostly focusing on the issues and refraining from attacking each other directly. 

Still, the candidates took some shots at each other. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard and Sen. Kamala Harris traded sharp criticisms over each other, and Sen. Cory Booker brought down the house with a zinger against Biden’s lack of support for national marijuana legalization. 

Here are the nine biggest moments from the debate:

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